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Wage and Hour Division
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Wage and Hour Division (WHD)

FMLA Surveys

FMLA is Working

The Department of Labor surveyed employers and employees nationwide on leave taking under the Family and Medical Leave Act. On the 20th Anniversary of the FMLA, DOL can conclude that the FMLA continues to make a positive impact on the lives of workers without imposing an undue burden upon employers. The FMLA is working.

Most Employers Give FMLA High Marks. 91% of employers report that complying with the FMLA has had either a positive effect or no noticeable effect on employee absenteeism, turnover and morale. 85% of employers report that complying with the FMLA is very easy, somewhat easy, or has no noticeable effect. Intermittent Leave. 24% A relatively small portion of leave taken for FMLA reasons is intermittent leave. Fewer than 2% of employees who take intermittent leave are off for a day or less. Employee Stats. Nearly 60% of employees meet all criteria for coverage and eligibility under FMLA. 13% of all employees reported taking leave for a FMLA reason in the past 12 months. Misuse of FMLA is rare. Employers reported the misuse of FMLA is rare. Fewer than 2% of covered worksites reported confirmed misuse of FMLA. Fewer than 3% of covered worksites reported suspicion of FMLA misuse.

Key News

  • The Department of Labor released findings of a survey titled Family and Medical Leave Act in 2012: Final Report which shows that FMLA continues to make a positive impact on the lives of workers without imposing an undue burden upon employers and employers and employees alike find it relatively easy to comply with the law. (February 4, 2013)
  • The Department of Labor published a notice that solicits comments concerning its proposal to collect information on employees' and employers' experience with family and medical leave under the FMLA (April 1, 2011).

Current Survey

Study Reports are as follows:

A public-use file of data from the surveys is also available:

*Note: Please note that the Zip files are packaged SAS and Stata files that will not open without the appropriate statistical software.

FMLA Survey Fact Sheet

Previous Surveys